94 percent of union workers had access to medical care benefits in March 2017

October 06, 2017

Ninety-four percent of union workers had access to employer-provided medical care benefits in March 2017, compared with 67 percent of nonunion workers. Having access means employers offered the benefit, regardless of whether employees chose to participate. Seventy-six percent of union workers and 48 percent of nonunion workers participated in an employer-provided medical care plan in March 2017. That results in a take-up rate—the percentage of workers with access to a plan who participate in the plan—of 81 percent for union workers and 72 percent for nonunion workers.

Medical care benefits access, participation, and take-up rates by selected civilian worker characteristics, March 2017
Characteristic Access Participation Take-up rate

Union

94% 76% 81%

Nonunion

67 48 72

Full time

88 65 75

Part time

19 12 61

Average wage within the following categories:

     

Lowest 25 percent

37 23 63

Second 25 percent

75 53 72

Third 25 percent

87 67 77

Highest 25 percent

93 73 78

Thirty-seven percent of workers whose average wages were in the lowest 25 percent had access to employer-provided medical care benefits in March 2017, compared with 93 percent of workers whose average wages were in the highest 25 percent. Twenty-three percent of workers in the lowest 25 percent and 73 percent of workers in the highest 25 percent participated in an employer-provided medical care plan, for take-up rates of 63 percent and 78 percent, respectively.

These data are from the National Compensation Survey — Benefits program and refer to civilian workers. Civilian workers include all wage and salary workers in private industry, but not workers in the federal government or the self-employed. For more information, see National Compensation Survey: Employee Benefits in the United States, March 2017. For definitions of the various terms related to employee benefits, see our glossary.

SUGGESTED CITATION

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, 94 percent of union workers had access to medical care benefits in March 2017 on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2017/94-percent-of-union-workers-had-access-to-medical-care-benefits-in-march-2017.htm (visited December 18, 2017).

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